Social media is a massive marketplace for individuals and businesses alike, with billions of users worldwide signed up to sites like Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and TikTok.
This trend has created a host of new ways for influencers and brands to generate income and revenue, and if you are interested in the techniques involved or maybe even looking to leverage these platforms for financial gain yourself, read on.
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Tips for making money from social media
There are a few ways that social apps can be harnessed for money-making purposes, and the strategies you pick will depend on your circumstances and aims.
Post sponsored content
If you have built up a following on social media, you could be classed as an influencer, as this category can encompass everyone from globally famous internet personalities to niche figures with a few hundred online acolytes.
Making money as an influencer is predominantly reliant on posting sponsored content, preferably of the kind which is relevant to your audience. Celebrities with vast followings get paid to feature footwear and clothing on their social feeds, for example, but you can also join the micro-influencer trend and focus on more specialized promotions as well.
Use a social media scheduling tool
Whether you run social accounts for a brand or you are just posting as yourself, managing your online presence can be time-consuming and taxing.
This is where social media scheduling tools come into play, as they not only allow you to automate the publishing of posts, but also ensure that you can pinpoint the best times to launch your latest piece of content to ensure that it generates the maximum exposure and engagement.
For companies, social media is essentially a new form of marketing platform which allows for direct connections with customers to be forged, as well as for these relationships to be fostered and maintained more successfully than in almost any other context.
The platform developers themselves recognize this, hence the reason that they are predominantly funded by advertising and also offer e-commerce integration so that brands can both promote and sell their wares to people without needing to direct them to a separate platform for transactions to be completed.
That is not to say that the whole social media sales experience is a cakewalk; there are still challenges to overcome and competition to take into account. Even so, the opportunities presented for making money should not be overlooked by those with an interest in doing so.
The importance of marketplace integration & cross-pollination
While so far we have looked at the ways in which social media can be turned into a money-making machine if you have the right approach, it is worth touching on the barriers which exist to achieving this, and the routes that the top influencers and brands have taken to get where they are today.
As mentioned in relation to social media sales, companies and individuals are essentially beholden to the features offered by the platforms they occupy when it comes to making cash. Instagram and TikTok are better equipped for sharing sponsored content and earning clicks and conversions than Twitter, for example, not only because of the increased engagement their image and video-focused platforms offer, but also because of the marketplace features that are in place.
Then there is also the fact that influencers and brands cannot afford to be present on just one platform. Instead they have to curate accounts across multiple major social media services, or else risk fading into obscurity.
So there you have it; while social media is certainly capable of creating a lot of wealth and fuelling brand growth, it is also a tough environment in which to build and maintain a presence.